Ryan Roche is New York’s go-to designer in case of anything connected to timeless, luxurious knitwear. Throughout the few last seasons, she introduced us to the most fleecy, cashmere cardigans and sweaters ever. Also, she’s the modern-day queen of beige – in fact, a majority of her looks are kept in different shades of this warm, underrated colour. Yes, that sounds like a strong foundation for a brand to stay in its comfort zone. But Roche won’t rest on her laurels anytime soon.
Spring-summer 2017 was Ryan’s first runway show, and that let her present a visual experience for he guests. Julian MacKay, a soloist with the Mikhailovsky ballet, travelled from St. Petersburg to stage a dancing performance among the designers’ models dressed in knitted skirts and evening wear. The lightness of those knits is comparable to MacKay’s grace. The clothes were so different comparing to the last seasons, and that felt really exciting about Roche’s outing. Margiela-like, leg-of-mutton sleeves came with white blazers; romantic lace appeared in slip-tops and dreamy, maxi dresses. Cashmere scarves and shawls were worn the Marlene Dietrich way – so soigné! With the help of a new Italian factory, Ryan created her version of a suit – high-waisted trousers cinched at the waist and a semi-cardigan with light knit cables. Seeing Roche on new ground is one of my favourite moments of this New York Fashion Week so far.
With her autumn-winter 2016, Ryan Roche proves that her label is not only about the best quality knitwear – it also thinks about other wardrobe essentials. But still, the quintessence of the brand is the signature, cable knit cardigan in pale pink colour. It’s here, as every season, and it doesn’t stop to look like the best sweater in the entire world. Although I haven’t seen any of Roche’s designs in life, I bet their woolly texture should be super soft. With a soft spot for cashmere, specifically, the designer delivered a look-book filled with cozy, knitted (of course) maxi-skirts. Moreover, the collection featured a burgundy dress – smells with Victorian era in here – made entirely thanks to the old-school, granny crotchet technique. It’s a smart, yet short escape from Roche’s minimal aesthetics. It’s distinctly visible that the New York-based designer does her best to move away from her knitted comfort zone, by introducing some graceful, lace pants and peach-pink fur jackets. Concluding, your next winter wardrobe is sincerely supplied with Ryan Roche’s AW16 collection, I guess.